A Loveland Police Department sergeant has resigned following an independent investigation into the use of force against Karen Garner, a 73-year-old woman with dementia who was thrown to the ground and wounded by an officer.
Sergeant Phil Metzler was a supervising officer who responded to the scene and approved the use of force by Officer Austin Hop. Additionally, Metzler, along with two others, signed off on the use of force in August 2020, two months after the incident, according to court documents.
In June 2020, Garner began paying unpaid — $13.88 — from a Walmart store in Loveland after she was stopped by employees who took items back. Staff called Loveland police and Hop confronted Garner, threw him to the ground, broke his arm and dislocated his shoulder. Hope faces a charge of aggravated assault in this incident.
Earlier this month, Loveland agreed a $3 million settlement with Garner’s family over the violent arrest.
Police said Wednesday that Metzler submitted his resignation as part of the department’s disciplinary review proceedings.
“A police chief does not have the ability to prevent an officer from resigning,” Chief Robert Tiser said in a news release, “but this resignation closes another chapter in an incident that has led to the death of men and women.” The hard work has tarnished the Loveland Police Department that it serves and continues to serve with honor.”
The disciplinary review process is ongoing along with others involved in this investigation. Hope and officers Daria Jalali and Tyler Blackett have resigned over the incident.